Tangle of Triangle

Going stir crazy this winter, I’ve been looking for changes I can make to the living room.  It’s not terrible, but we have barely touched it.  I’d really love a new sofa, but I’m settling for new lamps right now.  I remember seeing the Isosceles lamps from Land of Nod (now unavailable) months ago, and loved the simple design.

So I recently made a version for about 12 dollars per lamp because I already had the white shades.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Finished-on-Table

At Home Depot, I bought 12 feet of 1/2 inch round wooden dowel for six bucks.  To make the bases, I cut 7 1/2 inch long pieces, with 60 degree angles to form each base triangle.  And another set at 3 1/2 inches to make the top equilateral triangle.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Base-Cuts

A little wood glue and tape to hold it in place until it dried did the trick.  To connect the triangles, I cut 15 inch long pieces at a 20 degree angle, though my cuts were slightly off.  But that’s okay, wood filler will make it look okay.  Ben helped my by shooting in pin nails while I held the pieces together to make this:

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Assembled-and-Filled

The triangles face opposite directions, and the connectors swirl around, point to opposite point.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-After-Filled-Joints

Fill in all gaps and corners, then let them dry.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Filled-Joint

Because I wanted slightly rounded corners, I used 50 grit sand paper to quickly take off the extra base triangle point.  Holding the sand paper at the same angle as the vertical while I worked made for a more seamless corner.  Then I followed up with 150 paper for a smooth finish.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Sanded-Joint

Then, to hold the lamp socket in place, I but two more triangles from 1/4 inch MDF.  The top looks normal, but to fit snugly without falling through, I sanded the bottom to fit the rounded shape.  Before putting the top in, I found the center and drilled a hole large enough for my threaded piece to fit through.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Triangle-Top-Pieces

More wood glue holds this top in place, giving the socket a resting place.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Top-Triangle-In

I bought two bottle lamp kits from Wal-Mart for $6.50 each, and used these pieces in addition to the wire.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Wiring-Pieces

To cover the threaded fitting, I bought a small chunk of brass tube to make a sleeve.  Once cut to size, I spray painted it white to match the lamps.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Cover-Tube

Then threaded the piece through the hole:

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Wiring

And secured it with the small flat nut on the underside.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Wiring-Underside

After connecting the wires, I popped the shade on and voilà, a new lamp.  Like the Land of Nod lamp, the cord isn’t hidden, just tucked in the center and drapes along the back.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Finished-Cord-Detail

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Finished

No more clinking of lamp chains from our old lights.  And the taller lamps give have a warm, even glow.  I tried lining the shades with gold fabric, but it blocked too much light, so I had to nix it.  All the gold paper I could find wasn’t long enough to fully wrap around the shade.

Isosceles-Table-Lamp-Finished-in-Living-Room

I’ve got a plan to update those cheapie end tables, too.  White marble remnant in the garage, prepare to be used.  And look how happy my fig looks!  It has already sprouted two new leaves and is working on a third.  Those tulips should bloom in a few weeks, too.  I’m so excited.  Loving all the green in the house during this dark, cold winter.  Anyway, back to the lamps.  If I were to make these again, I’d make the top triangle a little larger to have a wider spread.  But, I’m still happy with the result.

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